San Diego is known for its amazing weather, stunning coastline, and world-class restaurants.  If you’re looking for a romantic evening out on the town to treat yourselves, take a look at one of San Diego’s many upscale waterfront restaurants.  

With numerous seafood, steak, and everything in between, San Diego has something to satisfy everyone’s taste buds.  

Here are the 8 of the best upscale waterfront restaurants in San Diego to celebrate a special occasion!

So, sit back, relax, and enjoy a delicious meal with a breathtaking view!

JRDN Restaurant

$$$ – Seafood

Address: 723 Felspar Street, San Diego, CA 92109

Phone: 858-270-736

Hours: 11:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Monday – Friday), 9:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Saturday – Sunday)

Located right inside the luxury Tower23 Hotel on the beach, JRDN Restaurant offers a dine on the beach experience!

You’ll want to bring an appetite as Chef Stephen Gage employs local suppliers to create a dynamic menu that imaginatively captures the character of JRDN’s seaside location.

Chef Stephen, as a graduate of the San Diego Culinary Institute, brings considerable expertise and enthusiasm to each dish he prepares as he warmly invites you to join his oceanfront table.

Tom Ham’s Lighthouse


Address: 2150 Harbor Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-291-9220

Hours: 11:30 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Monday – Friday), 11:30 A.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Saturday), 9:30 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Sunday)

Tom Ham’s is a family-owned and -operated restaurant on Harbor Island that has been serving delicious fare since 1971.  

The restaurant is located in a historic Lighthouse building with an ocean-driven cuisine, a local beer list featuring 32 drafts, and spectacular views of the San Diego Bay and Downtown Skyline.

You won’t want to miss the featured food item, paella, a Spanish traditional dish with a California flare.

Oceana Coastal Kitchen

$$$ – Seafood

Address: 3999 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109

Phone: 858-539-8635

Hours: 7:00 A.M. – 2:00 P.M., 5:30 P.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Monday – Thursday), 7:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M., 5:30 P.M. – 11:00 P.M. (Friday – Saturday), 7:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M., 5:30 P.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Sunday)

Oceana Coastal Kitchen is the vibrant, signature restaurant at the Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa in San Diego’s Mission Bay. Oceana embraces fresh California tastes and a modern, marine-focused design, with an 800-gallon aquarium stacked with tropical jellyfish as well as an outdoor patio with panoramic bay views, which opened in 2015.

Steven Riemer, the executive chef, leads the kitchen and is committed to utilizing local and sustainable ingredients for the restaurant’s California-inspired breakfast, lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch dishes.  The cold bar includes sushi choices as well as other small bites and main courses from the coast of Baja and the Pacific.

Top of the Market

$$$ – Seafood

Address: 750 North Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-234-4867

Hours: Closed (Monday – Tuesday), 5:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M. (Wednesday – Thursday), 5:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Friday), 4:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Saturday), 4:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M. (Sunday)

From the top of The Fish Market bar, you’ll have panoramic views of Coronado to Point Loma.

You may anticipate superior, attentive service and a genuinely elevated sea-to-table dining experience whether you join in for cocktails on the roof deck or enjoy more intimate dining in the elegant restaurant.

First established in 1976, a sport fisherman, business partner, boat captain, and gourmet chef, all collaborate to open The Fish Market for the love of seafood.

Prioritizing freshness as a number one factor to being top of the line, they own and operate their own seafood processing and distribution facility known as Farallon Fisheries. 

Roy’s Restaurant

$$$ – Seafood, Hawaiian

Address: 333 West Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-239-7697

Hours: 4:00 P.M. – 9:00 P.M (Monday – Wednesday), 3:30 P.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Thursday), 11:00 A.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Friday – Saturday), 11:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Sunday)

Located at the Marriott Marquis, Roy’s in San Diego offers stunning views of the marina and San Diego Bay, specializing in bold Asian flavors and classic European techniques that define the Hawaiian-inspired fusion cuisine.

The first original Roy’s was first established in Honolulu in 1988, now regarded as an international cuisine.

The food includes a variety of creative sushi, Roy Yamaguchi’s trademark dishes, and new innovative preparations created by local chefs.

Each Thursday, take part in the Bar for Aloha Thursday and special discounts on bar bites, unique cocktails, and more.

Bali Hai Restaurant

$$$ – Polynesian

Address: 2230 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106

Phone: 619-222-1181

Hours: 11:30 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Monday – Thursday), 11:30 A.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Friday – Saturday), 10:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Sunday)

Plan your perfect event at Bali Hai Restaurant where more than 2.7 million of their famous Mai Tai’s have been sold as of February 2022. 

A stylish Polynesian paradise with a history of over 50 years, Tiki Joe’s Restaurant is located on the northern tip of Shelter Island.  Tom Ham, a San Diego restauranteur, helped save the island’s first “tiki temple,” which is still one of the world’s biggest original tiki temples.

Throughout the restaurant, you’ll find over 100 pieces of Polynesian art and artifacts scattered between the rooms. 

At the entrance, Mr. Bali Hai, a large wooden headhunter sculpture greets guests upon entering.

The Goof, which has been there since the inception of Christian’s Hut and will still be seen sitting on top of the restaurant.

Humphrys Restaurant

$$$ – American

Address: 2241 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106

Phone: 619-224-3577

Hours: 7:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M., 11:30 A.M. – 2:00 P.M., 5:30 P.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Daily)

If you are staying at Humphrey’s Half Moon Inn located in Shelter Island, San Diego, you’ll want to check out Humphreys Restaurant.  Even if you are not staying there, it’s worth the trip.

As one of the few restaurants open for an early morning breakfast, Humphrey’s offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

The skilled culinary staff has applied their divergent thinking and craftsmanship to develop delectable cuisine selections that include the region’s freshest fish, steaks, and veggies.

Humphreys is a perfect combination of SoCAL dining and music.  Whether you’re at Humphreys one of their world-famous concert nights or seeing a Backstage LIVE performance, take part in a dining experience that combines San Diego music and culture with genuine SoCAL cuisine.


$$$ – Mexican

Address: 880 Harbor Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619-814-1300

Hours: 11:30 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (daily)

Coasterra is one of the number one spots for foodies in San Diego!  They are a dynamic and modern restaurant, lounge, and floating event center that serves Mexican cuisine.

For over 33 years, the owners, David and Lesley Cohn have raised the bar for San Diego cuisine.  A proud family-owned and operated restaurant, the Cohn’s have created a positive work environment that shines through the dining ambiance.

Happy Hour is offered on weekdays from 3:30 P.M. – 5:30 P.M. in the Tequila Lounge and the patio.  Here you can enjoy $8 appetizers, $8 signature cocktails or house wines, and $6 select draft beers.

However, several promotions are offered throughout each month including Tuesday Date Night enjoying a menu for two with pre-fixed menu prices or CRG Takeout Tuesday’s offering 20% off your orders.

Conclusion for 8 Best Upscale Waterfront Restaurants in San Diego

If you are looking for a romantic evening out or simply want to experience some of the best upscale waterfront restaurants in San Diego, then be sure to check out any of these establishments.  From exquisite seafood dishes to tender steaks, there is something on the menu for everyone at these top-rated restaurants. 

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